Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:4-7

14 January 2013

Tutorial needed

So, supposing I wanted to take a photo like this one...
 

...and then add some text onto the actual photo, how actually would I go about doing that?  Could some kind, savvy soul please either write a set of instructions (free of fancy computer-speak) in the comments section or even write a tutorial on their own blog and then let me know?  That would be great.  Thank you. Mx

01 January 2013

A New Year's prayer from Valley of Vision

O Lord,

Length of days does not profit me
   except the days that are passed in thy presence,
   in thy service, to thy glory.
Give me a grace that precedes, follows, guides,
   sustains, sanctifies, aids every hour,
that I may not be one moment apart from thee,
but may rely on thy Spirit
   to supply every thought,
   speak in every word,
   direct every step,
   prosper every work,
   build up every mote of faith,
   and give me a desire
      to show forth thy praise;
      testify thy love;
      advance thy kingdom.
I launch my bark upon the unknown waters of this year,
   with thee, O Father, as my harbour,
   thee, O Son, as my helm,
   thee, O Holy Spirit, filling my sails.
Guide me to heaven with my loins girt,
   my lamp burning,
   my ear open to thy calls,
   my heart full of love,
   my soul free.
Give me thy grace to sanctify me,
   thy comforts to cheer,
   thy wisdom to teach,
   thy right hand to guide,
   thy counsel to instruct,
   thy law to judge.
   thy presence to stabilise.
May thy fear be my awe,
   thy triumphs my joy.

Amen

 
 
From Valley of Vision (edited by Arthur Bennett) page 206.

And peeling off the wrapping on 2013

I still think my theory holds true.  Well, it does for me, anyway.  The first six months of the year are all about energy, getting new things off the ground, having a go.  The second half of the year is the business end of the year - getting stuff done but not trying anything new because it is the end of winter moving into the time of the year when the calendar is overladen.  And so here I am at the start of the year, full of energy - amazing what a few days of laying on the sofa reading a very good book at every possible opportunity (and even stealing a few of the impossible moments) straight after Christmas will do for you - and ready to try some new things.  This is what I'm looking forward to for the year ahead.

Letter writing
This little storm has been brewing for a while.  I do like letter writing very much.  I like writing to friends and I like writing to people who do their job well to say thank you.  I had two little bursts of letter writing last year (and I received some very lovely mail in return) and have decided that this year I want to write one letter a month.  It may end up being more.  But I don't want it to be less.  It is such a relaxing and lovely thing to do.  And it will mean keeping up good Bible reading and good general reading...nothing good in, nothing good out.   And I shall return regularly to Ally's amazing pictorial post about letter writing and the other lovely Ali's post about letter writing for inspiration - just gorgeous.

Bible reading
Going to try out a near relative of my old favourite reading plan.  This year I am going for daily Old Testament, New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs.  This plan will get me through the lot once in the year.  I decided to throw in daily time in the Proverbs after studying this book for six months in a Bible study group during 2012. 

Practising the principles of How to Really Love Your Child
Lots of eye contact - and not just when we are staring them down because we are cross, but lots and lots of warm, happy eye contact.
Lots of physical touch - and Ross Campbell gives a lot of time to the subject of appropriateness in this department and how appropriateness changes as a child gets older.
Lots of focussed attention - not the "I'm half listening to you and half writing my blog post" sort of attention...ahem...

S'pose I better try a bit harder with the cooking...
I got a cooking magazine and have earmarked three new recipes to try this week...jumping in boots and all before I get to the middle of the year and the "getting stuff done and not trying anything new" thing kicks in.  One thing I really want to achieve this year is one of these...


Taken from here.

Not necessarily this one exactly...I am imagining strawberries rather than raspberries.  I'll keep you posted.

And there is one more thing. 
It may or may not have something to do with this.

Taken from here



















But I'll talk about that another day, lest it is sounding too much like a New Year's resolution.